Erucin, a new promising cancer chemopreventive agent from rocket salads, shows anti-proliferative activity on human lung carcinoma A549 cells

Dip. Farmaco-Biologico, Facoltà di Farmacia, Università di Messina, Villaggio Annunziata, 98168 Messina, Italy.
Food and chemical toxicology: an international journal published for the British Industrial Biological Research Association (Impact Factor: 2.9). 04/2009; 47(7):1430-6. DOI: 10.1016/j.fct.2009.03.024
Source: PubMed


Erucin (ER) is a dietary isothiocyanate present in cruciferous vegetables, such as rocket salads (Erucasativa Mill., Diplotaxis sp.), that has been recently considered a promising cancer chemopreventive phytochemical. Biological activity of ER was investigated on human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells, analyzing its effects on molecular pathways involved in apoptosis and cell cycle arrest, such as PARP-1 cleavage, p53 and p21 protein expression. Our results show that ER affects the A549 cell proliferation, enhancing significantly p53 and p21 protein expression in a dose-dependent manner (p<0.001). PARP-1 cleavage occurs only after exposure to high concentrations of ER (50 microM), in accordance to previous studies showing similar bioactivity of other isothiocyanates (ITCs). Our study reports for the first time that the induction of p53, p21 and PARP-1 cleavage may participate in the anti-proliferative activity of ER in human lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells. Comparison of data with those obtained with the isothiocyanate sulforaphane (SF), structurally related to ER, underlines the strong relationship between structural analogy of ITCs and their biological activity. The ability of dietary compounds to modulate molecular mechanisms that affect cancer cell proliferation is certainly a key point of the cancer prevention potential by functional foods.

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    • "The taste of rocket is associated with its glucosinolate content and the associated breakdown products; in addition, more than 20 volatile compounds are responsible for its characteristic flavor (Bennet et al., 2006; Nielsen et al., 2008). Furthermore, rocket leaves have high contents of health-promoting phytochemicals, including carotenoids, vitamin C, flavonoids and glucosinolate (GLs) (Barillari et al., 2005; Bennet et al., 2002; Melchini et al., 2009). The leaves may be sold unwashed or as a ready-to-eat product , which is washed, dried and packed under a modified atmosphere (MAP) to obtain a shelf life of 10 days. "
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    ABSTRACT: The shelf life (SL) of fresh rocket leaves stored at 0, 5 and 15 °C was studied using a non-linear model. In particular, the cumulative form of the Weibull equation and a log-logistic model were, respectively, used to fit the experimental data over time and to study the temperature dependence of the degradation rates for several sensorial, chemical and physical attributes. The Weibullian model fit the experimental data, exhibiting correlation coefficients between 0.950 and 0.996; when using traditional first-order kinetics, this value ranged from 0.902 to 0.985. Additionally, a log-logistic model that could accurately describes the temperature dependence of the Weibull parameters also accounting for the thermal history of the product. Due to the different degradation patterns of the degradation curves, the definition of the shelf life significantly changed based on the quality attributes and the storage temperatures. In particular, when the samples were stored at 5 °C, the appearance score limited the shelf life, exhibiting value of 5.8 days; when non-isothermal conditions were considered, the ascorbic acid content became the critical factor due to its major sensitivity toward temperature abuse. Results may be useful for planning produce logistics with fully automated distribution steps and better managing stocks, according to thermal history and, possibly, the priorities of potential customers.
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    • "Health promoting effects of brassica vegetables have been attributed to glucosinolates, sulfur containing compounds almost exclusively present in plants of the family Brassicaceae. However, these chemopreventive effects are not mediated by glucosinolates per se but mainly through isothiocyanates , one of the major hydrolysis products resulting from myrosinase cleavage [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]. Myrosinase is a thioglucohydrolase located apart from glucosinolates in so-called myrosin cells. "
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    • "Interestingly, more recent SF bioavailability studies in human subjects consuming broccoli showed its bioconversion into isothiocyanate erucin (isothiocyanato-4-(methylthio)-butane) (ER), a sulfide analog [25, 26]. Whether this conversion from SF to ER is important for the health promoting effects of glucosinolate still remains to be determined although some reports provide a glimpse into the possibility of differing activities between these two isothiocyanates [27–29]. "
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    ABSTRACT: A wide variety of acute and chronic neurodegenerative diseases, including ischemic/traumatic brain injury, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease, share common characteristics such as oxidative stress, misfolded proteins, excitotoxicity, inflammation, and neuronal loss. As no drugs are available to prevent the progression of these neurological disorders, intervention strategies using phytochemicals have been proposed as an alternative form of treatment. Among phytochemicals, isothiocyanate sulforaphane, derived from the hydrolysis of the glucosinolate glucoraphanin mainly present in Brassica vegetables, has demonstrated neuroprotective effects in several in vitro and in vivo studies. In particular, evidence suggests that sulforaphane beneficial effects could be mainly ascribed to its peculiar ability to activate the Nrf2/ARE pathway. Therefore, sulforaphane appears to be a promising compound with neuroprotective properties that may play an important role in preventing neurodegeneration.
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